0

1.He has been watching TV.

What does this sentence mean?

Does it mean that the person started watching TV sometime before and still watching it or the person started watching TV sometime before and has stopped watching it? does it mean something else rather than my options?

  • This question is more suitable for the ELL (English Language Learners) site. – ab2 ReinstateMonicaNow Jan 17 '16 at 16:16
  • 1
    Hi, Vinnie, please read the link that I posted in the above comment. As @ab2 mentioned, I'd like to advise you to visit our sister site English Language Learners, but please make sure you take the tour and visit their Help Center before posting any question. Good luck. – user140086 Jan 17 '16 at 16:27
  • 2
    Same question was posted on ELL, He has been watching TV. – user140086 Jan 17 '16 at 17:05
0

The first option is right. It means that the person has started sometime before and is still watching TV. The continuous perfect tense is often used to indicate that the action has been performed for a long time (most often longer than it's supposed to).

  • Hi, user149411. Welcome to EL&U. The present perfect continuous (progressive) doesn't necessarily indicate that the action has been performed for a long time. Please make sure that you take the tour and visit our help center for additional guidance. – user140086 Jan 17 '16 at 16:30
  • 1
    It's not necessarily true that he is still watching TV. – reinierpost Jan 17 '16 at 16:40
  • @reinierpost doesn't it mean that the person is watching TV now? – Princesadh Jan 17 '16 at 18:05
  • I don't think I'm stretching the meaning of the sentence too far by suggesting the person being spoken of has a "certain look" about him which says to me, "Boy, he sure looks as though he's been watching TV. His eyes are bleary, and he's walking like a zombie!" In other words, his TV-watching is in the past; it has stopped; and now he evinces a certain zombie-like appearance! Don – rhetorician Jan 17 '16 at 20:48
  • Just google for examples. See e.g. this Calvin & Hobbes strip, where Calvin's father says to Calvin: "You've been watching athletic shoe ads again, haven't you?" – reinierpost Jan 18 '16 at 23:12
-3

That's mean the person started watching TV sometime before and still watching it now.

  • 1
    No. Usually, the person is not watching it now. When a BBC voiceover says: "You've been watching (some programme)", you are not watching that programme. – reinierpost Jan 18 '16 at 23:15

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.